USS George Washington (CVN-73) aircraft carrier

Nuclear aircraft carrier USS George Washington will return to South America

Vessel and other US Navy warships will participate in the new edition of the Southern Seas exercise, which will visit several countries in the region

The aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN-73) will visit South America in the coming months, the U.S. 4th Fleet said last week.

The nuclear-powered vessel will participate in the Southern Seas exercise along with the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer, USS Porter (DDG 78), and Henry J. Kaiser-class replenishment oiler USNS John Lenthall (T-AO-189).

The US Navy has not revealed, however, when the exercises will take place. The vessels will carry out operations at sea with Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru and Uruguay.

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The George Washington and its support ships will stop at ports in Brazil, Chile and Peru.

USS George Washington (CVN-73) aircraft carrier (US Navy)

It will be the aircraft carrier’s third participation in the exercise, the last of which took place in November 2015.

“We look forward to building readiness and advancing training as we engage with our friends and partners in South America,” said Rear Adm. Robert Westendorff, Commander, Carrier Strike Group 10. “We also look forward to visiting several spectacular locations in South America , as U.S. Navy Sailors don’t often get to see this part of the world.”

Tensions in the region

The visit of the aircraft carrier George Washington to South America, although routine, occurs amid a climate of tension in the region.

A continent whose countries move between right-wing and left-wing governments, South America has seen important changes in recent years, such as the inauguration of the new Argentine president Javier Milei, an ultra-liberal politician who has brought the country closer to the United States.

Su-30 fighters from Venezuela (AMB)

In Colombia and Brazil, however, presidents Gustavo Petro and Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva marked the shift towards leftist governments.

But Venezuela is the biggest focus of concern. Dictator Nicolás Maduro has declared intentions to take over part of Guyana’s territory, claiming that the region of Essequibo would be part of the country.

The nation will hold presidential elections in July, but the veto of opposition candidates to Maduro has received criticism from several countries.


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